If you’ve had a look at our services page recently, you’ll notice we love setting up new clients with a working mailing list and a beautiful newsletter. We do this because we think it’s a hidden gem of online marketing that often gets overlooked. It gets overlooked because the idea of a newsletter often reminds us of old-school, skeezy mail inserts that just get tossed in the recycling bin.
But modern newsletters? They’re important to any business. Here are five reasons why you need a newsletter for your online business.
The Voluntary Opt-In
Your email newsletter is absolutely nothing like the sleazy junk mail that used to flood your mailbox. Your subscribers opted-in voluntarily. Whatever the reason (brand admiration, sales and coupons, valuable content), they decided to share their email address with you—that’s something special.
When I give out my email, it means I value what a brand or company is offering. It means I want to hear more of what you have to say; and I want more on a regular basis. Which, in turn, means that my attention is highly profitable to that brand because I’m the kind of person who is most likely to buy again, visit again, share again.
It’s A Gentle Reminder
Whether you send out a newsletter on a weekly or monthly basis is up to you. One of the great things a newsletter does is remind those on your mailing list that you still exist, and that you still have fantastic things to offer them.
Even if you’re pumping out great content on a daily basis, it’s unrealistic to think every member of your community is checking for it daily. Lives get busy, and sometimes they need a gentle reminder that you exist, and that hey!they still value what you’re doing. So be sure to say hello!
Cultivate Exclusive, Engaging Relationships
You need to place some value in your newsletter, beyond your typical online offerings (that are listed on your website, social media, etc.). To make this relationship special, offer something exclusively to your subscribers. It might be a great little nugget of information or inspiration, or it might be something more tangible like a discount code. Just be sure to nurture that relationship with a sense of exclusivity. This is your inner circle, so treat them well.
Increase Returning Traffic to Your Website
A newsletter can be a powerful tool in increasing returning traffic to your website. Whether you’re choosing to drive your subscribers to your website to read new articles or giving them extra incentives to share and forward the newsletter itself to others, just the act of sending a quality piece of content directly to your subscribers will generate new interest and turn your one-time visitors into regular readers.
Instant Feedback and Results
Unlike on social media, where you’re battling feeds that refresh immediately, or algorithms to reach people who fit a specific profile for advertisements—you literally just have to send out an email. By growing a healthy and targeted newsletter list, you’re able to test product ideas, or learn more about what triggers the best response from your most valuable consumers.
But the most important part of all…
We’re going to close on a quote from Paul Jarvis: “We’ve all heard that mailing lists drive revenue and all that, but for me it’s a little more. I feel like after years of searching, I’ve somehow managed to gather up all my rat people in one place.” Because that’s what a newsletter is: it’s a letter between you and the people who matter most your business.
So go ahead. Don’t worry so much about selling yourself…just make a connection on a consistent basis—and you’ll find some serious success with it.
This article was written on November 30th, 2015 for Campfire Collective.